Season’s greetings! Here’s a very special Christmas episode of Making Stitches Podcast for you. I know that this Christmas is one like no other and thought you might appreciate an extra long episode of stitchy chat to lift the spirits – especially if your festive plans have been dealt a blow by the latest Covid restrictions.
Making Stitches is a product of the lockdown (it was a project for me to focus on instead of thinking about everything else that was going on). So I thought I’d take this opportunity to look back at 2020 and how crafts help get us through when things are tough. I asked Making Stitches listeners if they would like to share their ‘Stitch Stories’ and four of them very kindly stepped forward. My thanks to Diane from Merseyside, Lisa in Macclesfield, Rebecca in Ontario in Canada and Sarah in Gibraltar for sharing their Stitch Stories.
Also featuring in this episode are Lisa & Lynda-Rose from The Crochet Sanctuary (who were my first ever guests on Making Stitches back in April) as well as Eleonora from Coastal Crochet. Lisa & Lynda-Rose spoke to me about their projects since April (3 Crochet-alongs and a podcast of their own no less!) and Eleonora spoke of the therapeutic benefits of crochet and how hosting her Beachcomber Blanket CAL this spring helped her cope with all that was happening.
Wherever you are in the world at this time and whether you celebrate Christmas or not, I hope you find peace and joy and let’s all look forward to a brighter, more positive 2021 with our crafts to keep us company! Happy Christmas & Happy Stitchmas!
Listen to the episode by searching for Making Stitches on your favourite podcast app or through this link.
And to find my lovely listeners who shared their Stitch Stories: You can find Diane at Stitchscape, Lisa is Teal & Tangerine on Etsy and on social media. Rebecca is at Sweet Bee Crochet and you can see Sarah as @sarahsheehangib on Instagram.
The music featured in this episode is Make You Smile by RGMusic from Melody Loops.
Kerry Lord took up crochet for the first time when she went on maternity leave from her family’s alpaca yarn business less than ten years ago. She watched some YouTube tutorials and created a cuddly elephant for her baby; Edward, who was still yet to be born. Little did she know back then that Bridget the Elephant would eventually go on to be made thousands of times by crocheters around the world and the book of crochet animal patterns she would go on to write would be translated into 22 different languages.
This week on Making Stitches, I have a chat with Kerry Lord, the founder of Toft and creator of more than 200 crochet patterns. Kerry has gone on to write 11 pattern books, the most recent of which; A Partridge in a Pear Tree, has been released in time for Christmas. She told me how the business first got started and how after shaky beginnings it’s become the flourishing creative hub it now is.
We chatted last week in the first day of our most recent National lockdown here in the UK and just before Kerry launched the brand new Toft Christmas campaign which you can find out all about on the company’s website.
Hello there! Making Stitches is back for a new series after a long summer break. In this series, as with the first one, I hope to be sharing the stories of interesting creative projects as well as hearing from creators themselves about their own creative journeys.
In this first episode of series 2 I recap on what’s been happening over the summer for myself as well as some of my guests from series 1. Since I last spoke to you, a new crochet podcast has been born, a lockdown quilt has been completed and is now on tour raising funds for charity and just like many other events this summer a yarn festival is going online so you can enjoy it from the comfort of your own home.
For more information on the subjects covered in this episode, please check out:
This week on Making Stitches I’m sharing my first international interview – it’s with Esther from Essiebirdies. I spoke to her from her home in the Netherlands on her first day in an empty house after 10 weeks of lockdown.
Esther is a crochet designer who creates beautiful patterns for amigurumi toys, shawls, bags and home furnishings. Her passion for crochet came relatively recently when her daughter asked her to make an amigurumi toy. Once she had started, Esther was hooked.
Esther designs in both English and Dutch and has followers from around the world making her beautiful designs.
Sewing teacher, dressmaker and patchwork quilter Victoria Peat this week shares her story. From getting a sewing machine for her 18th birthday and designing patchwork quilts to studying at the London College of Fashion and giving sewing lessons on live television, Victoria has a true love of making.
Victoria moved to Gibraltar last year and thanks to the recent relaxation of the lockdown rules here, we were able to meet in person and have a socially instanced chat about everything from making World Book Day costumes to how on earth the contestants on the Great British Sewing Bee cope with the challenges they face.
You can find Victoria on social media by searching ‘Victoria Peat’ as well as on her website.
You can hear Victoria’s episode of Making Stitches here.
The music featured in this episode is Make You Smile by RGMusic from Melody Loops.
This week on Making Stitches we hear from Amanda Bloom the driving force behind Little Box of Crochet. The bi-monthly subscription box delivers a yarny treat to crocheters around the world and contains a complete project with yarn and instructions along with what Amanda describes as ‘knick-knackery’ or extra little treats to enjoy.
Amanda spoke to me from her home above her beautiful yarn shop ‘Craftopia’ in Ingleton in North Yorkshire. She spoke movingly about her beloved daughter Jenny who set her off on her Little Box of Crochet journey whilst she was seriously ill with cancer as well as about her move to Ingleton and her hopes for the future.
Hello and welcome to the latest episode of Making Stitches. This week I’ve been speaking to Carole Rennison, one of the founders of the Yarndale Festival which takes place in September each year in Skipton in North Yorkshire.
Every year, the festival organisers enlist the help of knitters and crocheters from around the world to help them with their charity appeal, and this year is no different. The call has gone out for makers to create cotton dishcloths which will be sold at the festival to raise much needed funds for the nearby Martin House Children’s Hospice.
Carole told me about how the festival first got started along with how you can get involved with this year’s dishcloth appeal. You can hear the episode through this link or by searching for Making Stitches on your favourite podcast app.
For more information about the Yarndale dishcloth appeal, please check out the Yarndale website.
A lot of us are turning to crafts at this time of lockdown and isolation. The act of making things can work wonders for our mental health, and being able to contribute that craft to a community project can help ease the sense of isolation.
Inspired by the story of female prisoners of war making a quilt at Changi Prison in Singapore during World War II, a global group of quilters are contributing to a community quilt which will raise funds for a charity helping communities during this difficult time. For this episode of Making Stitches, I spoke to Sue Brown who’s idea it was to begin the quilt and Amanda James who has contributed a square to the project.
The photosfeature some of the quilt squares already sent in to the ‘Creativity in Captivity’ quilt. Top photo: (clockwise from top left) made by Harriet Seddon, David Seddon, Cathie Holden & Amanda James (who features in this episode).
Bottom photo: (clockwise from top left) made by Gwen Shackleton, Barbara Holden, Nikki Holden & Lynda Jackson
You can listen to the episode here or by searching for ‘Making Stitches’ on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and other podcast apps.
I am super excited to be sharing this week’s episode with you. It features none other than Eleonora Tully from Coastal Crochet!
Eleonora has been immersed in yarn crafts all her life but 5 years ago began her blog Coastal Crochet where she shares her love of crochet and beautiful photos taken on coastal walks near her home in the south of England along with her adorable Miniature Schnauzer Salty.
Eleonora has used her blog to run blanket crochet-alongs uniting a huge community of crocheters across the world. Each of her blankets have had a seaside theme and feature shell stitches and waves among many other stitch techniques. From the first Seaside Stashbusting Blanket to last year’s Changing Tides blanket and now her current Beachcomber blanket thousands of crocheters have joined in the crochet-alongs getting great enjoyment out of following the patterns each week.
Thank you so much Eleonora for speaking to me for Making Stitches!
You can listen to my chat with Eleonora here, or on Apple Podcasts, Buzzsprout, Deezer, Google Podcasts, Spotify or Stitcher.
You can find Eleonora at coastalcrochet.com or just search for ‘Coastal Crochet’ on Instagram and Facebook.
Hello and welcome to the very first episode of the ‘Making Stitches Podcast’. As so many of us are in Coronavirus lockdown and are finding solace in our crafts, now seemed like the perfect time to put this podcast into action.
Each week I hope to speak to different makers, crocheters, knitters and sewers about how they got into their craft of choice and to share their enthusiasm it.
First off we’ll hear from two ladies who turned their love of crochet into a business offering weekend and day-long crochet retreats. The Crochet Sanctuary is based in Cheshire in the north of England and offers guests the chance to meet fellow crocheters and indulge in yarn-filled fun.
Aside from laying on weekend getaways, Lisa and Lynda-Rose have also designed crochet projects for companies including Hobbycraft, Knitcraft and Little Box of Crochet. They are currently hosting a twice-weekly Facebook CAL (crochet-along) inspired by the pandemic lockdown – the aptly named ‘Pandemonium CAL’.
I caught up with Lisa & Lynda for a chat about their love of crochet, organising CALs and, of course, the Crochet Sanctuary as well.
You can find the Crochet Sanctuary website here. You can also find it on Instagram & Facebook – just search for ‘The Crochet Sanctuary’.
Listen to the podcast episode here or on iTunes, Spotify, Deezer or Buzzsprout- just search for ‘Making Stitches Podcast’.